A Spot of Tea, and a Tag :)

Wednesday, 26 August 2015

via Pinterest
I always find it immensely exciting when a new writer joins the blogging community! I first discovered Emily Hayse and her lovely new blog at Herosinger, through Schuyler's review with her on My Lady Bibliophile, and already her blog looks like it will be a truly wonderful place filled with a focus on literature, faith, music, writing, film, family. . . all those good things! :).

For her blog launch, Emily's doing an exciting giveaway and a tag :). And because I am a sucker for fun tags, I thought I'd join in! Be sure to check out her lovely new blog and enter the giveaway too. . . 

1. Coffee or tea?
I like the smell of coffee, and tiramisu is a favourite dessert, but I only drink tea, hot chocolate or herbal drinks :). 
2. Rainy days or sunny days?
Ooh, I think sunny days, because sunshine and blue sky makes my heart so happy! Though if it is a nice kind of rainy day - you know, raindrops, smell of wet earth, twittering birds, and thunder-rolling sky, I love that also!
3. What is one food you couldn’t live without?
Fruits and salad, I suppose :). 
Also, I feel sad at the idea of living without some ice-cream in my life. 
4. Give three words that describe you.
Jolly. Intuitive. Creative. 
5. What would you do if you had a free hour and could do anything you wanted to?
Read my Bible! I always wish I spent more time doing that! 

But there are so many things I'd want to do, haha! I'd probably want to write a blog-post and browse my blogger feed, and write a letter or email to a friend. I'd then pick up a nice novel and read, work on writing or editing more in my story, play a piece on my violin or do some crafty/art thing like colouring or drawing. . . I also don't mind cooking :).

If it was a free hour in the company of family or friends, I'd watch a movie with them, play a board-game, or a have a fun picnic at the bay :).
6. What is your favorite book-to-movie adaption?
I actually have a few :). The Lord of the Rings trilogy is my all time favourite set of films please don't argue!! And as unpopular as it sounds The Hobbit trilogy is an immense favourite of mine as well - so good. Some other favourite film adaptions would be "Ben Hur", "The Scarlet Pimpernel" and "Pollyanna". Funny enough - I prefer those three films over the original novels, good as they all are. "North and South" BBC 2004, "Sherlock Holmes" Granada adaption with Jeremy Brett, "Emma" BBC 2007 and "Sense and Sensibility" 2008 are my favourite TV series book-to-screen adaptations. . . 
7. If there was one location from a book you could go to, where would it be?
Well Middle-Earth and Narnia aside (it's a given, folks!), I would love to visit the New Forest district of England (Margaret Hale's Helstone), and the Lake District for Beatrix Potter's stories :). . . basically anywhere in England or Europe, please!
8. If you could meet one character from a book, who would it be?
To meet Frodo Baggins or Samwise Gamgee and Gandalf the Grey would be so amazing :). But Pollyanna and I'd be best friends!
9. If you could ask one author of the past a question, who would it be? What would you ask?
I am not sure, there are so many. I'd love to have met with J.R.R. Tolkien and C.S. Lewis. G. K. Chesterton, Elizabeth Gaskell, Jane Austen, Charlotte Bronte, Rosemary Sutcliff, Elizabeth Goudge, and Patricia St. John would have been other favourite choices. I don't know what I'd ask them though!
 10. If you could change one event you didn’t like in a book, what would it be?
I have a mental blank, but when I think of something, I'll come back to you maybe ;).

Two Jolly Comrades in Crime | Beautiful People

Wednesday, 5 August 2015

Hello friends! I have something a little different for you all today :). If the title is anything to by, I'm going to talk about my writing! True, I've not written anything in months, as you all know, and these days with school and all, I barely have time to even think about my poor characters. But every now and again I remember a few bits and bobs about them, and my heart aches just a little, I sniffle a few tears, stifle my wistful sighs, or chuckle at the ridiculousness of one of my beloved character-friends :D. 

So today, I am going to join in a Beautiful People #12 edition interview hosted by Cait from Paper Fury and today's questions feature the Friendship theme, which makes it rather exciting. I'm going to talk about Jane Wilson from my WW2 historical novel, A Love that Never Fails, and her childhood friend Cynthia Oldacre, who I am not sure I've ever mentioned on this blog before. If you're all rather unfamiliar with the premise of my novel, you can read more about it on my "Stories-in-Progress" stage, and in my previous posts through this link: A Love that Never Fails. 

1. How long have they known each other, and how close are they?

Jane and Cynthia have known each other since Jane was seven and Cynthia was ten, and despite the few years age gap, they are incredibly close - like salt and pepper, they are rarely seen apart :). 

2. What’s their earliest memory of being best friends?

The day they first met. It was Jane's first day of school when she moved to London; her lunch pail had got scuffled in a fight, and when Cynthia found her sobbing bitterly in the gym, she gave her a handkerchief and offered to share her cucumber sandwich with her - their friendship was born from that moment onwards :). 

3. Do they fight? How long do they typically fight for?

They argue sometimes, but never really outright fight; Cynthia has too much common-sense, and Jane has all the sensibility to make it anything more than a few minutes' quibbling. They do like to banter a lot with each other though. 

4. Are their personalities similar or do they compliment each other?

They are rather opposite, so yes, their friendship compliments the other person.

5. Who is the leader of their friendship (if anyone)?

They rather alternate, but I think Cynthia leads their friendship somewhat because of the age experience? However, as Jane is the more spontaneous and out-going of the two, she's responsible for most of their adventures and scrapes! 

6. Do they have any secrets from each other?

Those two girls are quite open with each other, but there are a few things that they'd rather they didn't admit to anyone, not  even to each other. Jane has a girlish admiration/crush for Cynthia's brother, Colin, which she never would dare admit to her friend, while Cynthia is mortally afraid of dying, a fear she desperately tries to hide from her young friend. 

7. How well do they know each other’s quirks and habits?

With the amount of time they spend in each other's company, they're quite familiar with each other's habits and quirks. Cynthia eats her apples rather noisily (which bothers Jane to no end!), wears a beanie scarf at all times and in all places outside of school and church (a comfort thing), and becomes very quiet when she's upset (which makes Jane look rather like the chatterbox sometimes). Meanwhile, Jane is quite apt to burst into tears for the mildest causes (if she is very happy, she can cry, and if she is livid with anger, her first response is to start sobbing); she starts sniffing the edges of her curls if she's nervous, and pulls out her worn copy of The Secret Garden and sits by the family's old Grandfather Clock whenever she has to do any serious thinking - Cynthia treads the ground around her very carefully on such occasions. 

8. What kind of things do they like to do together?

The two of them share a great love of music - Jane plays the violin and Cynthia plays the guitar, so they accompany each other with duets and swap new songs they love with each other; Cynthia draws and loves to illustrate, while Jane is fond of reading and writing stories, so they create little magazines and booklets together and distribute them at their school and with their parents' friends. They also like to write plays and perform them with Cynthia's brothers and Jane's cousin Phyllis. 

9. Describe each character’s fashion style (use pictures if you’d like!) How are their styles different/similar?

Jane's fashion style would be very pretty, well-tailored, simple 1940s styles: polka dots, bows, pretty little dress, knitted cardigans and comfy pinafores are her favourites. 
How Jane could look during Christmas. . . 
When Jane is dressed up for church,
and a little older

Cynthia's is quite pretty and vintage, a bit plainer than Jane's, but also a little more queer with odd bits and bobs in her accessories, colour-choices, etc. On the whole, she likes it to be rather plain and simple:

How Cynthia would look on a regular  Monday during the summer vacation
Cynthia, dressed up for church
10. How would their lives be different without each other?
This question hurts, but I won't tell you why. I'll only say they each make the other person grow and mature and love and laugh and be kind in ways they never quite realize. Without their friendship, Cynthia would be more reserved and afraid, and Jane would be more self-conscience and naive. 

As for Cynthia–hers’ was a heart of gold; Jane's dearest friend. Between them it was more the intimacy of sisters. They did all sorts of things together, especially during the summer months – surprising Jane’s grandmother with a special birthday dinner scrapped from a month’s rations, reciting a play for school theatre in the musty attic of a deserted barn, playing "the Adagio" from Winter on the violin and guitar by the Thames to cheer the people. They were quite the jolly comrades in crime.
- A Love that Never Fails

The curly crop of ginger hair, and the steel in Cynthia's grey eyes made Jane think of her as a vixen sometimes, fierce and pretty. . . but it was also the fire that made her a warm and kind friend. 
- A Love that Never Fails